Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Archie Mazmanian reports on the latest developments of the Urban Ring Phase 2:

My prodding of MEPA to respond to Commissioner Mullan’s letter of January 22, 2010, resulted (email response 5/13/10) in being informed that the response, following its preparation, would be posted at MEPA’s website:


I checked this website from time to time, finding it quite difficult to navigate. Finally, after learning from the Urban Ring website of the CAC’s July 13th meeting, I went upstream, downstream, and finally located MEPA’s June 22nd response to Commissioner Mullan in advance of the CAC meeting. Unfortunately, I was unable to retrace my journey so as to provide a link. The Urban Ring website did not post or provide a link to MEPA’s response.

One of the handouts at the July 13th CAC meeting was a “spreadsheet” 5 pages in length headed “MassDOT Urban Ring Planning Progress Report (July 8, 2010).” One of the items is “Urban Ring website transfer” which is in progress to a new website hosted by MassDOT: www.mass.gov/massdot/urbanring expected to be launched sometime this Summer. A recent check indicates it is not in place as yet.

In the meantime, if someone is able to pinpoint MEPA’s June 22nd response at its website, it would be appreciated if the URL could be provided to this Blog for purposes of a link. The response is quite interesting and calls for careful scrutiny. For example, the response includes the following:

“Moreover, I concur with MassDOT’s assessment that continuing the review of this project which, according to the long-range Regional Transportation Plan adopted by the Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization, is not slated for construction within the next twenty years makes meaningful environmental impact review difficult to achieve.”
And what does this mean for the public’s mass transit needs in the Greater Boston area today? In twenty years, if I make it, I’ll be celebrating my 100th birthday. In the meantime, I’ll be marking time; alas, no one will be able to “Mark Twain” at the Charles River crossing proposed for Phase 2 of the Urban Ring as the Commonwealth and Cambridge continue their Charles River White Geese “killing fields” projects.

Stayed tuned for follow up.

Archie Mazmanian